Wednesday, August 21, 2013
The Phonograph by Thomas Edison
Before the ipod came around the Phonograph was the coolest thing in town.
This invention was developed by Thomas Edison. While Edison was working to improve the efficiency of a telegraph transmitter, he noted that the tape of the machine gave off a noise resembling spoken words when played at a high speed. This caused him to wonder if he could record a telephone message. He began experimenting with the diaphragm of a telephone receiver by attaching a needle to it. He reasoned that the needle could prick paper tape to record a message. His experiments led him to try a stylus on a tinfoil cylinder, which, to his great surprise, played back the short message he recorded, "Mary had a little lamb."
Recording of Thomas Edison on The Phonograph.
The word phonograph was the trade name for Edison's device, which played cylinders rather than discs.This cylinder phonograph was the first machine that could record and reproduce sound created a sensation and brought Edison international fame.
August 12, 1877, is the date popularly given for Edison's completion of the model for the first phonograph. In 1878, Thomas Edison established the Edison Speaking Phonograph Company to sell the new machine. He suggested other uses for the phonograph, such as: letter writing and dictation, phonographic books for blind people, a family record (recording family members in their own voices), music boxes and toys, clocks that announce the time, and a connection with the telephone so communications could be recorded.
Photo: Library of Congress